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BASKETBALL 101
10-08-2003, 11:27 PM
The basketball star and the cheerleader finally got together. Who cares if it took eight years?


Carter family
Dr. Ellen Rucker, left, is engaged to Daytona Beach native and NBA superstar Vince Carter. The pair met in 1995 and renewed their friendship in July. Rucker, a chiropractor, and Carter are planning a July 2004 wedding in Palm Beach.

Vince Carter and Dr. Ellen Rucker got engaged Friday in Toronto and plan a July 2004 wedding in Palm Beach, according to Carter's mother, Michelle Carter, of Port Orange.

Carter is a Daytona Beach native and Mainland graduate who plays for the NBA's Toronto Raptors. Rucker, a chiropractor, hails from Lancaster, S.C., a town of 10,000 that's about 30 miles south of Charlotte, N.C.

The young couple met at the University of North Carolina in 1995, when Carter was a freshman basketball player and Rucker was a sophomore cheerleader. They left Chapel Hill at the same time, in 1998, although Carter, who jumped to the NBA after his junior year, returned to attend classes in the offseason until he completed his degree.

Romance bloomed when the two met again at the wedding of Carter's former North Carolina teammate Antawn Jamison in Charlotte July 12. Jamison, who was traded from Golden State to Dallas in August, married Rucker's younger sister Ion.

So Carter is not only getting a wife, he's becoming a brother-in-law to one of his closest friends.

"I'm very excited," said Michelle Carter Tuesday. "She's a very nice young lady, from a nice family."

Michelle Carter is delighted to be getting a daughter-in-law because she needs help in planning the 35,000-square-foot home Carter is building in an exclusive Orlando development. It's completion date is some time in 2005.

"She's been having input and I welcome it," said Michelle Carter. "I'm glad to have another female involved in picking fabrics and deciding where the sink should be."

Michelle Carter thinks the young couple will make their permanent home in Orlando. Vince Carter lives in his Toronto condominium during the season.

They are planning their wedding in Palm Beach because it's an area both of them like, and also in the hopes that they can keep the guest list to a reasonable number.

Jamison's wedding was a huge affair, Michelle Carter says, and Vince and Ellen would like something a bit smaller.

That may be wishful thinking. Vince has countless friends and fans and Ellen, whose parents are Ruby and Dr. Douglas Rucker, has seven siblings.

ItalianMobbstah187
10-09-2003, 09:23 AM
Congrats Vince! i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif